Friday, December 31, 2004

Happy Barnabas Week

I love the last week of the year. I usually take the week off work and do what I really enjoy doing: going out to lunch with friends and encouraging people. This year I called the week Barnabas Week.

On Tuesday I was at Jesse and Rhonda's house during the afternoon. Jesse is fixing up the house before he and his family can move in. I had an education in insulation installation. I was amazed at all the work we were able to accomplish.

On Wednesday I went to lunch with Joe and his brother Eric. Joe and Eric are starting a tree serving company here in town. I was very interested to hear about starting a company. I must admit the entrepreneurial spirit was making an appearance. I love what I am doing at RBC Ministries, however it think it could be equally fun to not go to the office everyday and have a more freer work routine.

Yesterday, Duane and I had lunch. We had not seen each other for a while. It was great to catch up a bit and learn about what is going on in his life. He and his wife Hiba have become good friends since Becca and I were married in June.

I must admit the biggest thing this week has been waiting for Jesse and Rhonda's baby to be born. To say that we are impatiently waiting would be an understatement. At any moment my cell phone could ring and it's baby time. We are so happy for Jesse and Rhonda and hope the baby comes soon.

I hope your Christmas celebration was a blessed and happy one. Best wishes for God's richest blessings in 2005!

Sunday, December 26, 2004

What an interesting day!

I went to church this morning at the church where I grew up. I was asked to sing special music. Singing at this church is not like singing at the church where Becca and I attend in Grand Rapids. Needless to say I was a little nervous. I think I did okay though I am always a little hard on myself.

After church my mom, dad and sister went out to lunch at Ruby Tuesday. As we made our way to our seats I noticed the former Assistant Pastor at my parent's church was there. He candidated to be the new Senior Pastor but was not voted in. He has formed another church in the area. When this first happened I was very apprensive about what was happening. However, I now look at this situation in a different way. I think the church where he was Assistant Pastor was stuck as he and others were doing so much. Now that he and some others are gone, this has forced people to step up and be involved. I think the church will be better off as a result of the circumstance though it was very hard at the start.

This afternoon my sister, Becca and I went out to do some shopping. We wanted to go to Ten Thousand Villages however it was closed. So we went to Caribou Coffee and got some needed liquid refreshment. Caribou is not in Grand Rapids so I always make it a point to go there when I am visiting my parents in Cleveland.

I'm not sure if you have read the news today or not but large tsunamis and earthquakes have hit some countries in Southeast Asia today. I received an email from a co-worker in Sri Lanka. He and his family live in a home on the beach. Needless to say, it has been a long and hard day for them. At last word their house is okay and I hope it stays that way. Please pray for the Berman family as they come to your mind.

Saturday, December 25, 2004

Merry Christmas everyone. I hope you are enjoying time with your family and friends. My family followed tradition and made sos for breakfast this morning. Becca and Melissa stuck to French toast though.

Many fun gifts for everyone. Becca, Mel and I all got 128MB memory sticks. I lost mine so I am glad to have one again. They are very helpful for transferring files. 128MB memory stick is the equivalent of 88 floppy disks. Two other fun gifts were a Michigan State Spartan sweatshirt and Livestrong yellow bracelet. I finally have one!

Enjoy your day and take lots of pictures as we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ.

Friday, December 24, 2004

Greetings from Bay Village, Ohio

Becca and I are here celebrating Christmas with my parents and sister Melissa. We decided to come down from Grand Rapids on Wednesday night and I am very glad we did. There was a ton of snow during the night Wednesday night which we would have had to deal with on Thursday morning. Not exactly my idea of fun if you ask me.

Tonight is the Christmas Eve service at my parent's church. It is always fun to be able to go and see people I haven't seen in a while. This has been a very hard year for my parent's church as there was a church split in June. Many people left along with the former associate pastor who was not voted in as the new Senior Pastor. Very difficult times to say the least.

One of my co-workers in Singapore posted a new website for him and his family. He is a photographer and graphic designer for RBC Ministries. He does amazing work. Check it out here. I also added a link to Alex's site in the links section on the right side of the page.

I am not sure if I posted this on here or not but BECCA HAS A JOB!!!! She starts on Tuesday with Catholic Family Services in Downtown Grand Rapids. She will be working 30 hours per week doing general office work. We are both very happy about this job. She is contracted to work with them till April. Praise the Lord for this provision and wonderful Christmas gift!

Well I think that is about all for now. I'll post some pictures of my dad and I shoveling snow when we get back to Grand Rapids. Very entertaining for sure.

Merry Christmas to all! / ¡Feliz Navidad a todos!

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Thank Wal-Mart for helping Salvation Army overcome the Target loss

Hi everyone - The following is the text of an email I received today from the American Family Association. Becca and I were at Walmart last night and were excited to see the Salvation Army kettles there. I had no idea what Walmart was doing to help the Salvation Army and needy families this Christmas season. Please read the email and act as you feel lead.

Folks dropping money in Salvation Army kettles at Wal-Mart stores can make their money go twice as far. The world's largest retailer announced last Thursday it would match up to $1 million in donations.

The company said the clock started Thursday on the match and runs through Christmas Eve.

Wal-Mart is helping raise money for needy families, while the Target Corporation continues to serve as this year's "Ebenezer Scrooge." Earlier this year, Target told the Salvation Army to "take a hike" with its red kettles, refusing to allow them to raise much needed funds to help children this Christmas.

"We hope our customers join us in donating what they can to benefit an organization that does so much in our communities to serve families in need," Wal-Mart spokeswoman Betsy Reithemeyer said in a news release. "The Salvation Army red kettles and the bell ringers are truly a holiday tradition worth keeping."

The Salvation Army said the kettle donations are spent locally and said the Wal-Mart match will extend local donations.

I hope you will consider making your Christmas purchases with companies, like Wal-Mart, who support one of the nation’s most beloved charities, the Salvation Army.

In the meantime, please take a moment to thank Wal-Mart for supporting the good work of the Salvation Army.

Send your email to Wal-Mart now!

Friday, December 17, 2004

Our Christmas Tree is finally up

Our first Christmas tree is finally up. You can see it below. I will work on the other pictures and post them next week or during the weekend.

Monday, December 13, 2004

Happy Monday morning

Happy Monday everyone. I am not sure if I will be able to out do Amelia's most recent blog entry but I'll bring you up to date on what has been happening with Becca and I.

We are definitely in the thick of the holiday season. Right now the biggest stress is the Christmas program at church this coming Sunday night. I think the program will go well but there is a lot to do in the meantime. I am looking forward to having more freetime during the week after it is over.

Last night I went to my in-laws church to hear a group called ALIVE. I have gone on a missions trip to Guatemala with some of the people from this group. Last night they were reporting on a trip some of ALIVE's members took to Mexico. It was nice to see the group again. I was able to sing one of the songs with them which was unexpected but very fun. The song is called ¿A quien ire? which translated means To Whom Will I Go? The songs reminds us that God wants us to come to Him when we experience problems and tribulations.

That's all from me for now. Nothing too exciting going on around here I guess.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Becca is working

Becca has a job. RBC has been inundated with mail and our fulfillment team has requested bail out during the holiday season to get the orders in the mail that are coming in. So for the next couple of weeks Becca will be working here. She is continuing to send out resumes as this job is only temporary but I am excited that she has a job even on a temporary basis.

Last night we started interviewing the teens who have applied to go to Thailand next June. It was neat to get to know the kids a little bit better and to hear about their thoughts about this trip. I thought on the way home that it might be interesting to interview the teens in groups as this would tell us how the kids get along before they are officially on the team and in Thailand. I wish I would have come up with that idea sooner.

Saturday, December 04, 2004

The weekend is here

The weekend is here again. I always like the weekend as it gives me a time to relax and to spend more time with Becca. She had a very good meeting with a temp agency on Thursday. Her test scores were very high. We are hoping to hear from them soon.

Tonight is our first Christmas party of the season. A small group we have recently re-joined is getting together. One of the members of the group will be leaving in early January to attend university in Chicago so this will probably be the last time we see her for a while.

Becca has created a blog for the youth at our church. She is the Youth Director and will be using this blog to post information about upcoming activities and also put forms online for downloading. Here is a link to the page. Check it out and send Becca your comments.

That's about all from here for now. Enjoy your weekend!